All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing’ - Edmund Burke

March 9, 2009

S I E R R A  H E R A L D

Vol 7 No 3

The tendency sometimes to protect perpetrators for the sake of peace...doesn't help society. Impunity should not be allowed to stand. - Kofi Annan on Waki report


Ah ha ...... we know you'll want to know what this is all about. So here goes.

We have received credible reports from the nation's capital, the seat of government - Freetown that is - that the All People Congress party, (the same one) now has an FM station broadcasting in Freetown!!!!The late President Siaka Stevens

It's called FM 88.8 and you'd better believe it when we say that the man in charge of operations is the one and only Dennis Smith of 666 Radomatic Machine fame.

So, you may want to know, what is so spectacular about the APC party setting up a radio to broadcast its views?

A couple of things. Those who suffered under that party from 1968 to 1992 as well as staunch party supporters until their overthrow by their own vetted khaki boys know that to even think about that would see you hauled in court on a treason charge. Oh yes.

One can just imagine the cry of the wolves as the APC Youth league operatives using "comrade" as a title would gather and strategise as to how best those supporting such a radio station are to be brutalised. The station would then be dynamited and key leaders of that station presented in court on charges that they had plotted to overthrow the legally-constituted authority of "the great helmsman, the sagacious and indefatigable leader His Excellency Dr Siaka Stevens!!!

Then would they gather - judges, the police, the military, officials of the prison department to work out the necessary strategy that would show just how terrible the radio station operators were and how they deserved to be quartered and drawn!!!!

But now, even in opposition, the APC is allowed to operate a radio station in the capital without any fear of harassment!!!

We hope that this sign of tolerance, this sign that at the end of the road, we are each other's keeper will reign supreme and that party or ideological nor ethnic loyalties will never again goad us into violence and the setting up of kangaroo courts to eliminate opponents - perceived or real.Daisy Bona

Another point. The man in charge of the station Dennis Smith is a long-term loyalist of the party and has always remained so. This man risked his life after the junta was kicked out because he was seen as too close to them. If that was the case, then you can be sure that Dennis Smith could have thrown his lot with the beasts because he was convinced that they would hand over power to the APC.

A couple of simple minds were of the view that since the NPRC handed power (in their own logic) to the SLPP, then it was right and fitting that the beasts hand over to the APC.

Nice thinking, except that a key element in the equation, the RUF, that had been fighting to overthrown the self-same APC for six years was ignored. To their peril!!!

But back to the point. There was a time when press freedom was so smothered and things so repressive that even stalwarts like Dennis Smith and Daisy Bona, on one SLBS programme publicly admitted that the way things were going on in the country "it was if there is no government in place".

This drew the wrath of the top echelons of the party. Both were ordered off the air and things re-organised so that "such anti-government and treasonable act" was never repeated. They were spared a long term in detention because it was Joseph Saidu MomohThe late Joseph Saidu Momoh - the most misunderstood APC leader who was in power and his advisers "took into consideration certain circumstances."

We wish Dennis Smith and 88.8 FM well in the new spirit of free speech and democracy.

We hope that should they, the APC win, against all odds that they would continue to allow other radio stations to operate!!!

Indeed, visiting one website dedicated to the party, we found this rather shameless proclamation. It is copied as written on that website.

We Yone Radio - The voice of the rising sun. Radio osai-sai-sai-sai. Radio owei- owei-owei-owei.

The A P C Party have again made history. The We Yone radio is the first radio station owned by a political party for the purpose of promoting democracy and enlightning the public on issues affect them in Sierra Leone.


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